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The Royal Wedding Gets Sustainable & How You Can Too

by Mackenzie Schoenherr

Photo by Alexi Lubomirski

Wedding season is officially here, bringing with it Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding, the most extravagant of 2018. Details of the royal wedding have slowly been surfacing for the past few months, such as the dress code for those attending and the possible designer of Markle’s dress. The soon-to-be couple has determined that Philippa Craddock will create the floral displays for their big day.

Known for her use of sustainably grown floral arrangements, Craddock, leading a group of florists from Buckingham Palace and St. George’s Chapel, will use plants grown from the parklands and gardens of Windsor Great Park and The Crown Estate.

Craddock intends to feature flowers that naturally bloom in May, such as foxgloves, white garden roses and peonies. Other plants that will be used include birch, hornbeam, and beech branches, as well as pollinator-friendly plants harvested from wildflower meadows. By incorporating locally blooming plants, Craddock is able to ensure that sustainability is a leading feature of her creations.

“The final designs will represent them as a couple, which I always aim to achieve in my work, with local sourcing, seasonality and sustainability being at the forefront,” Craddock has said.

After the wedding festivities come to an end, the couple plans to donate all the floral decorations to local charitable organizations.

Photo Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Creating a Sustainable Wedding Like the Royals

Now we all can’t throw as extravagant an occasion as the Royals can, but there are ways that everyone, no matter the budget, can factor sustainability into their own wedding.

Option one: Organic Flowers

Many times, wedding flowers are grown in bulk using chemicals that wreak havoc on the environment. By going organic, not only are you helping to eliminate the toxic load, but you are also allowing organic farmers to thrive. Sustainability is a big factor for these farms, so check to make sure that the flowers you buy are in season and not genetically altered. By staying local, as the Royals are doing, you create a smaller carbon footprint by eliminating the need to fly in exotic flowers.

Option two: Sustainable Invitations

Wedding invitations can be made very cheaply, but the trend tends to be the cheaper the invite the less sustainable it may be. A way to bypass this is to hire a local artist or graphic designer who focuses on sustainability. Recycled paper adds a one-of-a-kind aspect to the invites, and an artist gives it a personal touch. Don’t forget to ask the questions, such as where the ink or paint was purchased.

Option three: Vintage Clothing

Finding the perfect dress can be difficult, and worrying about a sustainable garment makes this process even more challenging. A vintage dress can add romance and charm to the look of a wedding, and eliminate overseas shipping and possible use of materials that are not sustainable and dyes that are harmful to the environment.

Have you found a vintage dress that you loved but it didn’t fit? Take it to a local alteration specialist to ensure that you are getting the highest quality alterations possible. When looking for jewelry to complete your look, consider shopping at vintage stores as well. The pieces found there offer history, durability and can add a sense of whimsy or charm. If nothing vintage works with your dress, consider investing in a jewelry brand that specializes in sustainable jewelry, and check that the pieces are recycled and ethically sourced.

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